Succulents have common features, especially if they are closely related. But it is possible to differentiate the different varieties based on their physical characteristics and features such as color, leaf shape, flowers, etc.
In this post, we’ll discuss all the information you need about Gasteria vs Haworthia, 4 key differences and similarities and how to care for these plants.
Native to South Africa and southwest Namibia, Gasteria is a succulent genus that belongs to the Asphodeloideae family and comprises 80 species. Gasteria is genetically related to aloe.
Also commonly called by other names like ox tongue, mother-in-law’s tongue, cow tongue and lawyer’s tongue, the genus gets its name after its flowers that are in the shape of a stomach.
8 Rare Types of Gasteria Succulents [With Pictures]
Native to South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique, Eswatini and Lesotho, Haworthia are succulent plants that comprise around 70 species and many subspecies, varieties and forms.
Just like aloes, Haworthia also belongs to the Asphodeloideae family and in fact, they look like miniature aloes.
20 Haworthia Types Of Succulents [With Pictures]
The aloe-like succulents have long, fleshy, thick and glossy, which have rounded edges. They may be textured or mottled with white specks, stripes or patterns, depending on the species.
Typically, the leaves are arranged in a distinctive spiral manner or opposite ranks (distichous).
Haworthia is a small, low-growing plant. And, their fleshy leaves form rosettes, which are typically speckled, banded, dotted or semi-translucent, which give them a distinctive appearance.
The rosettes are small usually and range between 1.2 to 12 inches in diameter. Usually, the rosettes are stemless, but some species may have stems reaching up to 20 inches.
When they mature, Gasteria plants produce tubular, stomach-shaped orange-colored blooms, from winter to spring.
Haworthia grows small, white-colored flowers.
4. Planting and Growth Rate
Gasteria plants do well outdoors, in the garden, but need light-shaded conditions. And, since they do well in low-light conditions, they make good indoor houseplants.
When planting them outdoors, it is best to do it in spring, but if you’re growing them indoors in pots or containers, then you can do it any time.
Gasteria plants are generally slow-growing and most of the varieties are quite compact, growing to a maximum of 20 inches.
Haworthia makes excellent houseplants. During the summer months, you can move the potted plants outdoors. These plants can be grown outdoors in the garden in areas without frost.
It is best to plant Haworthia in spring or early summer. These are fairly slow-growing succulents.
Both Gasteria and Haworthia are native to South Africa. Belonging to the same family i.e., Asphodeloideae, both plants look like miniature aloes. Both plants grow in the USDA Hardiness Zones 9 to 11.
Both are small to medium plants that grow well in the shade, making them perfect houseplants. Gasteria and Haworthia can both be propagated by using offsets.
In this section, we’ll discuss how to care for Gasteria and Haworthia plants.
Gasteria plants need plenty of light but not harsh, direct sunlight. If you want to plant. Gasteria outdoors in the garden, then choose a shaded location that gets dappled sunlight, such as under a tree. The plant does not do well in the afternoon sunlight.
If the leaves of your Gasteria are yellow or white, it means that it is getting too much sun. You can move your Gasteria plant outdoors during the summer, but make sure that you place it in a shaded area.
Generally, Gasteria prefers warm summers and cool winters. It does not tolerate frost or humid environments. If the weather in your area is humid, then water the plant only when the soil is completely dry to prevent root rot.
Gasteria does not need a lot of water. Ensure that the soil is fully dry between waterings. The plant does not tolerate water falling on the leaves directly, so shelter your Gasteria from the sprinkler or rainfall otherwise, this can cause the leaves to rot.
If you’re planting the Gasteria in a container, then use a quick draining potting soil that is mixed with sand or a potting mix meant for cacti or succulents.
If you’re planting the Gasteria in the garden, then a well-draining sandy soil with a pH of around 6-7 is the best.
Gasteria is susceptible to fungal diseases, which may be caused because of water on the leaves or too much humidity.
Use a cactus fertilizer to fertilize your Gasteria plant in the spring. While planting Gasteria, it may be a good idea to mix around 10% compost in the soil.
Haworthia plants prefer bright light, but it should not be strong and direct sunlight. They can withstand the direct early morning sunlight, but harsh afternoon sun can cause sunburn.
If the leaves of the Haworthia turn yellow, red or white, it means that the plant is getting too much sunlight. But at the same time, these plants need sufficient sunlight, a lack of which can cause their green color to fade.
When grown indoors, Haworthias should be placed near a west-or east-facing window. If grown outdoors, the plants do well in a location shaded from the sun.
Haworthia plants thrive in warmer temperatures, between 70°F and 95°F in the summer and down to 50°F in the winter.
If the temperature falls below 40°F, the plants can get damaged. Haworthia plants tolerate humidity and at night, they require good ventilation.
During summer and spring, water the Haworthia plant only when the top of the soil is dry, but ensure that the soil is not waterlogged.
During winter and fall, reduce the watering to ensure that the leaves of the plant are plump. Prevent water from collecting in the rosette because this can cause rot.
Haworthias like well-draining gravelly, or sandy soil. Using a quick-draining potting soil or cactus potting mix works well for these plants. You can mix pumice, perlite or aquarium gravel with the soil to improve drainage.
Haworthia is susceptible to mealybugs, and if the soil is too moist, then fungus gnats can be a problem.
Use cactus fertilizer during the growing season, i.e., summer and spring. Avoid fertilizing during fall and winter.
In conclusion, now that you have all the information about the differences that distinguish Gasteria and Haworthia, you can easily identify these succulents anywhere at all.